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Iceland works pays off in Ukraine 'nightmare'

Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir said Iceland panicked when losing a two-goal lead before their 3-2 play-off first-leg win in Ukraine, which to Anatoliy Kutsev "was like a nightmare".

Iceland works pays off in Ukraine 'nightmare'
Iceland works pays off in Ukraine 'nightmare' ©uefa.com 1998-2012. All rights reserved.

Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir feels Iceland panicked when losing a two-goal advantage before their 3-2 win in the first leg of their UEFA Women's EURO 2013 play-off against Ukraine. She and her coach, however, were delighted to take a lead to their home return on Thursday after a game which to Anatoliy Kutsev "was like a nightmare".

Siggi Eyjólfsson, Iceland coach
I think my team worked really hard, we showed good fighting spirit, and we also played some good attacking football attacking in the first half. We managed to score three goals, so I was really pleased. It's always good to score so many goals away from home, and that's important also for the second match. I was also pleased that even though Ukraine equalised we still came back with another goal. I think we showed a lot of character today.

Sara Bjork Gunnarsdóttir, Iceland midfielder
I think it was really strong that we scored three goals in their home game. A draw would have been OK but we went into the game to win it and we did, so that's really good for the next match. I think at one point we lost a little bit of focus, and we had to be careful when they took their free-kicks. Maybe we panicked a little bit, but in the end we got the win, so that's most important.

Anatoliy Kutsev, Ukraine coach
We were nervous in the first half, and our opponents scored twice. It was like a nightmare. It's all psychological. In the first half we weren't ready for the match. We made too many mistakes, and allowed our opponents to dictate the game, and that is unforgivable. But nonetheless, as I said [on Friday], these are play-offs – two matches, and everything is still to be decided.

Valentyna Kotyk, Ukraine midfielder
Maybe we didn't really believe in the victory until the end. But anyway, I want to thank everyone, because they gave everything they've got, but maybe we ran out of luck. During the first half we freaked out a little bit, but in the second half we were more positive. Anyway nobody's counting us out. There's still one match to play, and I think we can still have the last word.

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